NH3 Applicator Maintenance, Rate Controllers and Section Control

by Josh Zuck, Lanark, IL 

Most customers are starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel for harvest season in Northern IL. A few customers are done and a lot will be finishing very soon.  A lot of chiseling is going on before the ground starts to freeze. The weather next week isn’t looking good with snow in the forecast for Monday and cold temps coming our way. Yields have been really good and most customers are running out of storage.

Some guys have started NH3 this past week now that the ground has reached the lower temps. I have done a few Rate Controllers on NH3 bars. One of many nice things about the Rate Controller is that you can run with only one monitor in the cab, your GS2 or GS3. Another is that more and more guys are working with their local agronomist and they are starting to write more prescriptions. With the Rate Controller you can run prescriptions and put the nitrogen where it is most needed. This also helps saves you money in product costs.  Another nice thing is that it is capable of running Section Control (as long as you have the Swath or Section Control activation) allowing you do reduce overlap, and in turn saving you money on product and also less burn to the corn where there is too much nitrogen applied.   Most guys run two sections on 17 knives or less and three sections on 19 knives or more.  We can install a rate controller on any bar that uses Raven or Dickey John.  If you are interested in pricing, call your local Sloan Implement AMS Specialist.

Some maintenance to remember on your NH3 bars before season is to make sure to have your screens cleaned out behind the coolers.  A plugged screen with cause an erratic flow and the Rate Controller will show that. Also, if you run N-Serve in the Fall and Spring, make sure to take out your flow meter and clean out the impeller with brake cleaner and make sure that the impeller is turning smoothly. N-Serve is very sticky and will cause erratic reading if the flow meter is off balance. Also remember that NH3 is a nasty chemical to be around, make sure to also wear your gloves and goggles.


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